Welcome Back!

I actually started hearing the geese last month, but went to an urban park with a friend a couple of weeks ago to get a little closer and actually see some. It is fun to see them arrive and stake out their territory all around the park, with the little squabbles going on here and there. The ones I took photos of that were close were just walking around without a care in the world, raising their head when I took a shot or two, then just going on with their business. Indeed, there will be more to come.

Coming in for a landing, time to practise panning skills.
Still some snow on the ground but it is melting fast.
Nice to see them back.
Zooming in for a closer view.
A good splash of a landing.
there were a few pairs and trios here.
My first Mallard of the season.
A Pair walking toward my favourite tree

A closer view of the same pair.

A Promise of Flowers to Come

Spring is such a wonderful time of year for me, but it seems to take its time. Although I wouldn’t want to rush it, as Spring seems to come and go so quickly, I do like to get a sneak preview of what is to come by visiting the local conservatory when everything outside is still rather drab. When I go into the temperate pavilion I can breathe deeper breaths, a wonderful feeling for a person with asthma. My love of colour is satiated, and my spirits are lifted for having made the visit, looking through my lens to capture images.

I wish to share with you a visual lift by viewing images of the blooms. Enjoy!

Plant Patterns

While visiting the conservatory, I took photos of plants in full, as well as in more abstracted ways, to observe and record the patterns of the leaves. I found the patterns so fascinating! Here are some examples.

Dieffenbachia, otherwise known as “dumb cane”.
A reminder to take notes, don’t know what this variegated leaf is, nor the ones to follow.

Blooms and Fairy Folk at the Conservatory

I haven’t written for a while, as I have been busy with one thing or another, but lately I have been getting out more and taking my camera with me. My friends and I agreed it is a good time of year to see spring flowers before they appear outdoors and the feature pavilion at the Muttart Conservatory would be a treat, so that is where we headed.

a nymph or a goddess, the fairy theme loomed large in the feature pavilion.
Tulips and Daffodils are some of the first flowers to poke their heads out of the ground-love the colours!
I am not good with names but love the colours.
These look like a hybrid daffodil.
Tulips, hyacynths, those little clusters that begin with a “C”.

I hope you enjoyed a taste of Spring flowers, now here are some fairy glens that were nestled around the flowers.

Gnomes and Fairies
Fairies have their own gardens.
Always liked fairies as a child and still enjoy seeing something like this.

Another view of the gardens of wee folk.

I hope you enjoyed this as much as I did . It helps me get through the colder days and even snow flurries that pop up every now and then at this time of year.

In Time for Birding Season

Here are images of a Black-Capped Chickadee that I took two days ago.

Puffing up the feathers-a sign of breeding display?

Signs of Spring

I lucked-out and had a couple of visitors while walking on the trails. I held my hand out to one Chickadee and it flew close and hovered, but did not land. It was a pleasant close encounter.I heard from a friend that she saw her first gulls, geese and Robin! I will be in her neck of the woods next week so will have my camera with me.

Referring to the title, In Time for Birding Season, I have received a call from the doctor’s office and am booked for cataract surgery May 1st for one eye and May 15th for the other. I am so joyful to hear the news!

Cheery Chickadee and Shorts

Chickadees are always a welcome sight to behold and it always gives me joy to hear their peeps and calls. They are quick, constantly moving but their curiosity gives me an occasion to grab a shot of one as it comes to inspect what is going on. I lucked out with close proximity and good light with this particular one.

Happy to have a visit, albeit a quick one, with this curious Black-capped Chickadee.
Got a parting shot of this jogger in shorts-definitely a sign of Spring.

Puddles and One Magpie

Every year I am surprised by the quickness of the transition from snow to puddles. It only took a couple of days after the last snowfall to change into more spring-like conditions with an abundance of water. Not that the snow is gone; no, there is still plenty of that. It has lost its pristine quality and evolved into a tinge of a more mushy grey and brown.

I did go for a walk to look and listen, and was rewarded with what I think is a call of a House Finch, and the gurgle of a Raven as it flew overhead. Sidewalks forced me to navigate carefully, inching along in spots where it was icy or covered in water of indeterminable depth until stepped in. No soakers. The air was fresh and I took some photos of the water and an obliging magpie that momentarily perched on a fence.

The frustration of maneuvering a sidewalk was alleviated by the possibilities of an interesting visual capture.

Subtle light and textures reflected in a big puddle-one of many.

Pleasing iridescence on the tail feathers and a glint in the eye of this Magpie looking over the valley.

Rewarded with a side profile but alas, missing the glint of light in the eye.

Spring is Around the Corner!

The two strongest signs that Spring is coming are:

I can open my windows to let in fresh air. I have not been able to do that for months because the ice was so thick.

I can open the windows, no longer frozen shut!

My Clivia Lily is starting to bloom. I see that bright orange peaking up through the leaves, and I am happy because it did not bloom last year. I keep it in the sunny window and have started feeding it fertilizer in the past couple of weeks.

Just a peak of orange.

A closer view.

Bicycling Never Stops

I am happy to see that the bike lanes are used all year round, I even see people riding in snow storms. The city keeps the lanes clean but today it was snowing so it is not as clear as usual, but the lanes are still being used. Some people complain about having to pay taxes for the lanes but I don’t mind as long as they are used. I have never walked down this street and not have a bicycle pass by.

Some bicyclists will put studs in their tires for this time of year.

Not the nicest conditions but in this city the bicyclists are always out and about.

Intimate Snow Scenes

It was a good day to walk in the neighbourhood and find some interesting images to capture on this snowy day. Some images are looking down the street, some looking at the sun through fog and others are close-ups. I hope you like them.

Snow Hugging Tree Trunk
There has been lots of snow to shovel this year! Big piles in front of the condos!

Icicles are always a good topic.

Abandoned for now.

Foggy sunset